Peek at Paula’s: Entertaining Armoire

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By Paula Deen

If you’ve ever seen anything in my home, then you know that I love old finds. Junkin’, antiquing and scoping out yard sales and thrift stores has long been a favorite pastime of mine. Finding old treasures is a way that I can connect me and my family to memories of yesteryear.

Like this armoire I found not too long ago. I just love it. I was lucky enough to find it in one of my favorite antique stores in Savannah, Peridot Antiques. It’s believed to be an early 19th century piece, and all four of its sections sit at just over 10 feet tall.

But antique shopping can be a little tricky if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Here are some simple rules that I follow.

Think Outside the Box
This armoire was originally probably used to keep pieces of clothing, or personal objects of the original owner. When I bought it, it had been restored some years ago to be used as an entertainment center for a TV and other electronics. I didn’t like either of those ideas though. I thought it was such a unique and wonderful piece, that I wanted to show it off in my living room and keep some personal treasures in it, like my collection of seashell soup tureens.

Look for Quality
Sometimes it’s hard to find a quality deal when you’re going through old antiques. If you stick to sturdy and solid woods, you’ll have a better chance of finding furniture pieces that will last you for the long haul.

Small Fixes Make a Big Difference
Because I knew that I didn’t want to leave this piece closed very often, I didn’t want to have to stare at the back of it if we left it plain. I silver leafed the back to make it more interesting, but if you don’t have silver leaf, a metallic spray paint or interesting fabric will work just as well. A lamp inside really sets off the shine. I also removed some of the wooden shelves and replaced them with glass ones. If you have a similar piece in your home and don’t want to work with glass, you could try painting or covering the wooden shelves.

The next time you find yourselves at a flea market, estate sale, or thrift shop, I encourage y’all to think about ways that these special finds can warm and enrich your own homes. Don’t be afraid to mix things up, and do something unexpected!

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Thanks you for all the great recipes that you shared and smiles you brought to us. We greatly miss you! Chris

By chris cazares on September 03, 2013


Lived in USA for six years and loved your show. Do miss it. Sometimes pick it up here.

By Jacqui muir on December 29, 2011


Hey MARY2711. I'll bet you have chester drawers, too! LOL. It's not swift robe, it's chiffarobe. Too funny!

By Mary on November 01, 2011


So wonderful to share your joy of living! Your "story" is truly inspiring

By Anonymous on September 16, 2011


Beautiful and well done.

By Rev. Sarah Garner on September 16, 2011


Love your show, my daughter comes here for lunch and we watch your show . I have a grandson who is allergic to all milk products would you please do a show with milk free meals my grandson is 10 and feels very left out I try to make sure theres thing for him at get togethers and the with the holidays comming up would like to make him something special.Thank you Sina

By Sina Lupo on September 16, 2011


Love what you did with the armoire. I too like to think out of the box with I find an interesting piece of furniture.

By Jan Snyder on September 16, 2011


Love this idea!!!!!!!! I watch your shows and just plain love all of you!!I hope to get back down to Savannah one day!

By Wanda J. Lee on September 16, 2011


I just love Paul Deen.She seems to be a "real" person with no pretense.I always use her seasoning,oN ALMOST everything.Her ideas on home decor are fabulous.I also love furnishings from the past and like her never want to forget where I came from.

By Gayle Farmer on September 16, 2011


Love you Paula and watch your show all the time.

By pauline moriarity on September 16, 2011


I love what you have done with this piece. I am also a flea market, antique junkie. I think all the furniture in my home is either family pieces or antique finds. I love it!!!

By Vicki Waldon on September 16, 2011


Paula,I have something my mother-in-law call's a swift robe she gave it to me a few years age.It had belonged to my father-in-laws mothers mom. He's 84 now (father-in-law).It's cherry wood it looks a little rough.I've just decided that i'm gonna take it to someone that does that for a living.It has a small closet on one side with a mirror on the door.On the other side it has a little door with a mirror on it.and 3 0r 4 drawers underneath the small door.Trying to fix something like this scares me to death.I want it to look good.How's the babies, Brooke sounds busy.I hope she's able to have some time to her self.Have the bsbies used the blankets yet and the pillow cases for Jack.May God Bless you and your family.Mary

By MARY2711 on September 16, 2011


Love your armoire---looks beautiful. When my grandmother died, we took her old armoire and put it in the front part of our attached garage. It was designed with a hanging section on one side with a door, and then 4 deep drawers on the other side. We added shelves and store canned goods there since my kitchen is small and we have limited cabinet space. The drawers hold plastic containers and baking dishes. Everything is neat and tidy and easily reachable. (Our garage has extra insulation, so it never gets too hot or too cold for canned goods!) And the best part is everytime I go out there, it brings back fond memories of my grandparents.

By Linda K. on September 16, 2011


No matter how bad my day is, I see u and read ur blogs and watch ur show and I feel better. TThank you, for always lighting up my day.

By jenny on September 16, 2011


Love your furniture ! You have great taste!

By Tonie Goodin on September 16, 2011

Paula Deen
Paula Deen
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The Queen of Southern Cuisine muses about her recipes, life and family. See Posts

Brooke Deen
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Brandon Branch
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Julia Sayers
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Step behind the pages and let the Associate Editor of Cooking with Paula Deen fill you in on what goes into creating every issue. See Posts

Lisa Scarbrough
Lisa Scarbrough
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Andrea Goto
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Martha Lee
Martha Lee
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Practical, earth-conscious ways to live and parent in the 21st century. See Posts

Susan Greene a.k.a BUBBLES
Susan Greene a.k.a BUBBLES
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Ideas and advice from a 21st Century young at heart Grandmother. See Posts

Cindy Edwards
Cindy Edwards
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hi! wink i was wondering if you could share the recipe for the chiken/grape salad-the one that is pictured on the croissant above? thanks! wink sandra
Sandra Neuheimer-Huller in Chicken Salad: A Southern Staple on April 19, 2014 at 10:37 am

Where do I buy these magazines
in A Basketful of Traditions on April 19, 2014 at 8:22 am

TAMMY L LEVAN in A Basketful of Traditions on April 19, 2014 at 4:31 am

Hi Bubbles, You have some great tips. Can't wait to read your other blogs! Please give Aunt Peggy a big hug from me and here is one for you! (((HUGS))) See you in May!
Jaci Pardun in 10 Quick Household Tips on April 18, 2014 at 11:05 pm

Paula, I am glad to know that I am not the only person who makes Easter Baskets for their adult children and mail them across the United States. My Daughter lives in Long Beach, CA and I not only sent her a basket but her husband and my granddaughter Reese. We also buy special Russel Stover Bunnies for each child too. My husband has the list in his phone... Sara .. Cookies 'n Crème.... Sidney and Stephen.. Peanut Butter Etc. It one of my favorite things to do for my kids.. no matter how old they get. And passing it along to my Grandchildren. It's even more special to me knowing we share a family tradition. Blessings and Happy Easter!!
Sharon Cason-Card in A Basketful of Traditions on April 18, 2014 at 11:03 pm